Conversations She Will Have About Me With Her Therapist One Day

A month ago my youngest daughter presented my husband and I with a proposal. An i-movie proposal. Complete with dramatic scenes and credits that rolled at the end.

“Please homeschool me.”

Oh my heavenly days, no.





I’m not a teacher. I’m not patient. I’m not even nice some days.


I tried homeschooling this darling in kindergarten and honestly thought I was going to lose my ever-loving mind. I would watch other moms do this thing right. They were organized and scheduled and undistracted.

Me? I looked like a dog’s tongue when he’s got his head stuck out the window of a truck going 70 miles per hour. Messy. Flapping about. Not pretty to look at.

Can you imagine the conversations she will have about me with her therapist one day? No, let’s not add homeschooling to the list of things Mom didn’t do well.

But then I got to thinking. You know those 3am crazy thinking times when you should be sleeping but can’t? Yes, I started having lots of those. What if I just took a year of adventure with this beautiful young woman? What if I just hit the pause button on all things typical and just took a year to do things differently. With her. For her. Could I do that?

Okay, God if you want me to take a year of adventure with Brooke, show me.

Then I met a math teacher who got all excited about coming to my house to teach her math a couple times a week.

And then a fabulous reading and writing tutor just happend to have a couple days a week to do the same.

Of course an email then showed up from Shaun Groves asking me if I’d like to go on a missions trip to Peru with Compassion International. “Can I bring my daughter?” I asked. And what do you think he enthusiastically replied back?

My friend, Kristi, asked if Brooke could be in her small group Bible study this year.

My friend, Renee, asked if Brooke wanted to take cheerleading classes at her gym.

Another friend agreed to help teach Brooke some cooking classes.

And I’d already been planning a trip to Sea World.

So, the year of adventure started unfolding in front of me. “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope. Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” (Lamentations 3:21-24)

I have no idea how this year will turn out. I might royally mess up my child’s education.

But I have a feeling it’s going to be one we will never forget. One where we are going to grow and be stretched and learn. Together. This, the year of adventure.

What kind of adventurous thing could you do with your kids this year? Pick something small. One thing.

Maybe it’s the year of them learning 12 Bible verses–one per month. Or maybe it could be the year of everybody making their bed at least 3-4 times per week. Or maybe it’s the year of letter-writing, where you have them write one letter per week to brighten someone’s day.

One thing. One year. The adventure is waiting. No pressure. Just intentional fun. Let’s talk about it in the comments below.

And if you’re like me and need a little mommy pep rally to help your mornings go better, click here to read what I’m chatting about over at InCourage today.

And there just might be a little giveaway you may want to know about over at Kelly’s Korner and Courtney’s Women Living Well with some cool yellow bags.


  1. says

    I love this because I just committed to some one-on-one with two of my kids in similar fashion. Some things I’d rather have my toenails ripped off than do!! But looking to the finish line through the eyes of love makes it worth it. Praying for mommy-hearts to jump bravely on board and invest. Thank you again, Lysa. I really do love you.

  2. Karen Reed says

    Adventure is not how I labeled my recent prayer commitments to God, but the word adventure sounds a lot more fun that commitment! My oldest son is starting his junior year of high school and I’ve prayed to be more concerned with his spiritual success than his academic success. So God put a mission trip to the DR in his path in October and told me not to worry about the 4 days of school he’ll miss a week before 1st quarter ends. My youngest son just started junior high and his school day ends 2.5 hours before my job ends each day, so I’m bringing him back to work with me to do homework and serve our church staff doing odd jobs around the building. I am watching his servant heart grow before my very eyes. Beautiful answers to prayer for both my boys. Thanks for the reminder – commitments to God are an ADVENTURE!

  3. says

    Have a great year homeschooling! We are in our 4th year and love it but I know it’s not for everyone! This sounds like a fun adventure for you both!

    Also, I was invited to Peru and can’t go wahhhhhh! So wish I could be there with you all – sounds like a GREAT group going!!!
    I’ll see you in 2 days woohoo!
    Courtney 🙂

  4. Cindy says

    congrats on the homeschooling decision!! this is our 2nd year – both are in middle school. homeschooling was very different at the end of the year than the beginning for us. it took us a few months to get “de schooled” before we settled into learning b/c we wanted to instead of b/c we had to.
    Isn’t it great to do something like homeschooling (I, too, was hesitant), knowing that God is totally in charge? Because then you can immediately turn the driver’s seat over to him and you don’t waste all that time wrestling for control of the steering wheel.

  5. Audrey says

    I just got back from bringing our three daughters, one of which is my baby, to college 2000 miles away…my house is so quiet! Even though I have no regrets on how we spent our time or how we educated our children, a part of me wishes I could turn back time and have them in my home for just a little while longer. My goal this year is to write a letter once a week to each of my girls encouraging them and reminding them to whom they truly belong.

    All the best to you on this adventure with Brooke…it took watching my sister homeschool her son for a year to help him overcome some anxiety issues to appreciate the benefits of homeschooling. Where else could one reinact the revolutionary war with snow soldiers!

  6. Cindy says

    I don’t know if anyone mentioned this or not but you can also utilize your local community college. Your daughter can audit classes with permission from her principle and of course the proffessor. She just doesnt get credit for the class. You might want to investigate.
    We homeschooled our 2 children. Our daughter is an RN and our son works in retail. So pleased with them both

  7. Denise says

    I love love love your blogs! I dont have children myself but I think it is very interesting to read what you and others have to say about home schooling and lots of other topics you discuss. I have some Mennonite neighbors that home school and the children are growing up to be wonderful people from that experience. Go Lysa! You can do it and there are lots of us rooting for you!

  8. Ellen says

    I am a grandmother raising two grandkids and I have thought (briefly!) about home schooling. Then I see the excited looks from them that school is starting next week, I think God knows better what I can handle and what I can’t! All the best to you and Brooke, God is amazing isn’t He!!

  9. says

    I love it! Best of luck to you in this. I have a friend who homeschooled her freshman daughter for just one year due to some poor choices her daughter was making, and in that year they did Bible studies and character development. It made a world of difference in both of their lives and relationship.

    As for my “new thing”……now that i have all 6 kids in school my goal (which sounds silly and so very basic when I type it) is to have all of them in the living room 5 full minutes before the bus comes, to pray over their day together. We have a long history of chaotic mornings and a bus that has to wait for a straggler and a forgotten textbook and a yelling Mom…and this is the school year that I am committed to changing that history. I want to be deliberate in starting our days right, with organization, calmness, and prayer.

    Good luck on your new normal with Brooke!
    Shelly in the 8-Story house 🙂

    • Colette says

      This is a wonderful goal… Not silly at all… with 6 kids I can’t imagine what it will take to make that happen! But I know you can do it!!!!

  10. says

    Wow…I have tears in my eyes! How awesome that you were open to and responded to God’s call for you! And, how awesome that He has put you in such a position and surrounded you with such amazing people to bless you!

    I pray that you both continue to have a wonderful, blessed year!

  11. Jeannie says

    Thank you for this! I have spent the last week praying that my husband and I made the right decision about homeschooling our oldest three. This is the 4th year for my daughter, but the 1st year for our boys. I know it was what we needed to do for our family, but it’s still hard not to question if it’s the right time. Thanks for the encouragement and also to remind me God is in the midst of this adventure.

  12. Kate M. says

    I already know what I want our year to have more of…concerts. Christian concerts. Not just for the fun of it but that is an added bonus. But so she can see and possibly meet people who can be a role model for her. Christian artists, not that she wants to be a singer. But because girls look up to people and if my girl is going to look up to someone, I want her to look up to someone that has characteristics that mirror those Christian values. I hope we have a fun, exciting and God filled year of concerts this year! 🙂

  13. Ruth F. says

    Just wanted to say that you may want to check out schools that offer courses online (similar to the old “correspondence” thing). My daughter is doing her high school that way and for us it works well because she has online resources and I help her as well.

  14. Shelli says

    Three school terms ago I started with great trepidation home schooling our three kids. This year we have the wonderful opportunity to be with my husband in Ireland while he works because we home school. We are learning so many things first hand being here.

    Hope you both have a wonderful year.

  15. Kimmy says

    Good for you! You will not regret it. I have homeschooled my 3 youngest for their junior high years, so 2 years alone with each of them. There is no way I could homeschool more than one at time, I can barely homeschool one. I am exactly like you, I thought I couldn’t do this whole homeschooling thing, but I have had lots of help, which it sounds like you do to. I also don’t have much patience, especially when trying to teach someone (anyone, actually) something. My son (13 years old now) and I fought so much last year, his 7th grade year, we battled almost everyday. I seriously thought I was going to lose my mind, and so did he (I think I freaked him out a time or two). But I am so thankful that God got us through it and we stuck it out, it is only through God’s grace and love that we made it.

    My goal this coming year, his last with me homeschooling him, is to focus on compassion. I think it is much harder to instil compassion in our sons than in our daughters, at least that is how it seems to me. I want to focus on helping others, I am still thinking of ways to do this, I pray God leads us in the path He wants us to go.

  16. says

    Hi Lysa! This is a great idea for a year of adventure with your daughter. My daughter just began her senior year in high school and through the She Speaks Conference this year, God has invited me to go on an adventure with her. I’m writing a Bible Study for her and her small group, 11th and 12th graders. They will actually go through the study in the spring. When it’s finished, I will present it to her in self- published form, as a gift from mom to daughter for graduation-dedicated to her and her friends who have graced our home over the years. I’ve already started the writing and cannot wait to continue it with her as she ends her grade school career and begins the next season of her life. Have a great adventure with Brooke. I’m sure you will.

  17. Desiree Thompson says

    I have homeschooled my son since preschool (he’ll be entering the 4th grade this year). It’s not an easy job and there are days I question why but I know in my heart that this what God called me to do. I do not regret my choice and I get to spend my day with one of the handsomest men in my life. I get the privilege of watching him change and grow on a daily basis. Of guiding him through a Christian based education. Homeschooling my child in spite of my deepest fears has turned out to be a true blessing, one that I wouldn’t give up for anything in this life.

  18. says

    Good for you, Lysa! I always wanted the adventure of homeschooling but was never able to for various reasons. You and Brooke will grow in so many ways, including in your relationship. Enjoy!

  19. Deanna Martin says

    Congratulations on your new adventure! None of us feels qualified to teach our kids. Sometimes I wonder why…we’ve taught them from the moment they were born. You will have good days and bad days – days you would drive them off to the school in an instant and days when you miss need to say no to coffee with friends, but don’t give up! You will be blessed exponentially and the one thing she will never complain to her therapist about is that you believed in both of you enough to go on this ride with her!

    • Deanna Martin says

      *oops* “days when you need to say no”…
      You’d really think I’d proofread before I hit reply. Multi-tasker I am not!

  20. Becky Trull says

    My 10 year old son asked me the same thing last year. I was flabbergasted. What an honor that our children trust us THAT much. We love it..homeschooling has changed our lives. Blessings to you and your family.

  21. Colleen G. says

    Way to go… Very exciting news for you. This is a topic I play tug of war with in my heart and mind. I do think to take one year off from mainstream school and go on the road for 2 months traveling the country and educating at the same time would be something all of us wouldn’t forget. I am seeing how fast the time is going with these litttle miracles and want to embrace the moment. Perhaps one day…

  22. Andrea Limon says

    Well it looks like we are taking on the same adventure! I just started homeshool w/ my daughter last week. She is starting kindergarten, so this is new for both of us! I can completely identify w/ you about not being a teacher……I know this is not my gifting, but my husband and I feel very strong that this is what God wants us to do right now. My goal is to stay focused and organized through all of this and to still “like” my children when the year is done. I also have a one year old who is trying w/ all his might to break me during school time!

  23. Liz says

    You can do it!! I homeschooled our son, Jack, for 2 years (5th and 6th grades) after we found out he had ADHD, and his charter school closed its doors. I don’t “do” Math and Science, I do English and History. God got us through those years, and he still tells me he enjoyed them. God Bless You!!!

  24. says

    You have made a wise choice. You won’t regret it. Two of my children begged me to homeschool them when they were in 8th and 5th grade. I didn’t and have regretted it ever since. Our family has had some very hard consequences to face. – especially with my daughter.

  25. Nikoah Thornton says

    I am thinking of homeschooling too. We live in another country and the local schools may not be an option. I am looking for an accredited program so that it is easy for my daughter to go to an American/International school if we decide to move her in the future. Does anyone have any suggestions?


  26. Sue says

    I am so excited for you and your daughter! You both will be blessed so much – even on those days that will be ‘difficult’. This is the biggest gift that you could give her. I home-schooled my son, and he is in college now. He has thanked me again today for those years and can see the value. In fact, he wants to find a spouse that shares a vision of home school. Best advice given to me: Relax and focus on instilling the ‘love of learning’ rather than stressing over the memorizing of facts. You are ‘educating’ and not ‘schooling’, so the day doesn’t have to look like a school schedule. We did so many fun and fulfilling things that never could have happened otherwise – like the blessing of missions trips and living in another culture. Enjoy!

  27. Sara B. says

    We are taking the time to let each of our daughters plan and make a dinner each week. We are going on the 3rd week of doing this, and they love it. We plan our meals over the weekend together, shop for the indredients together, and I “assist” while they cook our meals on their designated night. They are so proud, and so are Mom and Dad! By the way, my girls are 10 and 13.

  28. sara altizer says

    Good for you!! I’m in my second year of homeschooling my little ones. I definitely have days I want to pull my hair out and no I’m not a patient person at all but it was a calling my husband and I both had so I had to listen!! What a great opportunity for you! I will be praying for you! Our adventures this year will be all over the place and spontaneous craziness I’m sure!!

  29. Barb says

    Good for you Lysa. You are about to embark on one of the most exciting adventures with your daughter. I homeschooled 2 of my sons. The relationship you develop is far greater than any academics you may feel inadequate in teaching. The fact that you listened to your daughter’s plea says volumes to her about how much she means to you. I pray for peace and patience as you go forth.

  30. Tina Halliburton says

    I am homeschooling my twin boys who are seniors. This is the first time ever! They begged us to agree to this and after much prayer and thought, my husband and I agreed. It has been a pleasant adjustment and I pray it is a great senior experience for them as we embark on this Christian based curriculum instead of TAKS (that’s the Texas required test) based!

  31. Loretta Pearson says

    Lysa, I both this is a speical year for you and your daughter.

    On the Webcast Thursday night “Unglued”, I hope you will replay it Friday as I and probably others won’t be able to view it then. I LOVED the last one, it was good. Our ladies Bible study at church is starting Unglued with your DVDs mid Sept. Looking forward to it and some life change!

  32. says

    Lysa, Don’t be surprised if you decide to keep homeschooling after your year is up. I homeschooled my son until his high school graduation. Your “curriculum” sounds fabulous. Homeschool is just doing life together — the way Jesus taught his disciples. Enjoy!

  33. Anna Huber says

    Hi Lysa, I just received your book “Unglued” from a dear friend. After the 1st chapter I was tweeting and so excited that I forgot to call her and Thank her for the book. She texted me and said, “I take it from your tweets, you got the book!” I texted her back and said “YES! Either you’ve been talking to my husband or you know me better than I thought!” This book has been life saving, for me and those who surround me. I am on chapter 11 and am already excited to re-read it. Anyway Thank you for sharing a part of You through your writing. I swear we have the same DNA! Anyway I wanted to give you encouragement on your new venture of Home schooling your daughter. I too am a homeschool mom, and not the got it all together type but the dog’s tongue hanging out the window type. I was encouraged by my got it altogether homeschooling friend. She gave me some wonderful advise. She told me, It takes a village to raise a child. And that’s what I leaned on throughout the years. Also Oliver DeMille Thomas Jefferson Education Book was an amazing resource. I’m sure you will have a village of people available to help you. God Bless & enjoy the journey 🙂

  34. Sandi in MN says

    Our soon to be seventh grade son asked to be home schooled this year after a very difficult school year last year. I’m really excited to have him home alone, although my fifth grade daughter is really reluctant to go to school this year. (we’ve home schooled previously) I am going to try some on-line classes to ease my load a little. We can pray for one another! My son learned that home school really is a privilege , I’m hoping this year will be better than his fifth grade year where we butted heads a lot!

    My best advice, don’t try to do public school at home, it’s not the same and you’ll feel like you’re never doing enough! What you have planned sounds amazing and priceless. Other Christian adults speaking into her life….beautiful!

  35. says

    So this year I plan to date my husband. Sending love notes in his lunch, planning little gifts, backrubs….dating him again. Wish 6 little people running around, he has gotten less and less of me. Lord give my husband a new wife & let it be me.

    Great start to your adventure. Great outlook. It is just that. Some days I wish that big yellow bus would stop and swoop away these mumchkins for a day of quiet. But the other days filled with pajamas all day, reading to the boys playing in the mud puddle, cooking with the girls…its life I would have missed.

  36. says

    That is awesome! My mom always believed in adventure and, while I was the serious bookworm type, her encouragement to try new things has made me a much more flexible (and experienced!) woman. My mom and I went on a mission trip to Honduras when I was in my 20s and the experience literally saved my life; I had been so depressed and withdrawn that I barely left my apartment. Experiencing true poverty and suffering jarred me out of my self-inflicted hermitage and enabled me to make the changes in my own life that I so desperately needed. When I got back to the states I quit my job, moved cross-country, met my husband, lost 80lbs and bought a farm in the mountains (my life long dream). OK – truth be told – that all took nearly a decade, but if it weren’t for that pivotal moment I might still be living in a tiny apartment in the city, afraid to leave the confines of my little den and experiencing life solely through the glow of my computer screen, not knowing the love and freedom of Jesus. So, I guess what I’m trying to convey is … you are awesome and, no matter what, your loving attention to your daughter is going to positively impact her life. This experience will make her more self-confidant and flexible and it will build a memory that you both will cherish for the rest of your lives. May God bless and protect you on your journey!

  37. says

    I love getting ideas from the others on here. Our adventure right now is homeschool too, but I love it – it makes sense to me. For us I think homeschool is a way for God to allow me the time I have wanted with my babies (two boys 6 and 10) and loosen our schedule to let in the new adventures. Concerts, maybe a new home business, travel, lots of hot chocolate tasting, finally taking the time to learn shoe tying and riding bikes for the younger one, proper whiddling techniques with those new pocket knives, etc. Good Luck to you – I’ll be praying for all of us Mommas in our walks:)

  38. says

    Oh, and I had another thought that somebody else may have pointed out. Mybe, just maybe, God is getting you to spend this time with you daughter so she’ll have LESS to talk about on that therapist’s couch. Maybe y’all will develop an intimacy that produces an ability to weather things together without needing that therapist’s help quite so much later. Just thinkin’ out loud.

  39. rehana says

    Hi Lysa

    I love your blogs and admire your Christian Witness from waaay across the pond-BTW when are YOU coming to South Africa? We started homeschooling our kids last year, this is our 2nd year . In South Africa, the school year starts in January. We did it mainly because my daughter was being bullied and My Grade 4 son came along for the ride. It was only going to be for a year. Now I have a tutor, because I work fulltime, but what has changed the most has been MY CHILD. She went from a nervous, depressed 12year old with social problems threatening to derail her, to a funny, outgoing, competent, responsible young teenager. She has become involved as a leader at our Church youth, has tons of friends and is enjoying life. The atmosphere in our home has gone from disastrous to great. But most importantly her relationship with God is changing, she is discovering her identity in Him. None of this would have been possible if I had left her to “sink or swim” in the toxic environment at mainstream school. I follow a curriculum and we have strict times about when school starts and ends and when projects or orals are due, but my kids are doing well and taking responsibility for their learning. So do not listen to the naysayers and dont compare your journey to others. May God bless you as you seek to do HIs will and His purpose for His daughter Brooke.